Fashion Fest 2017, Tropenmuseum
I took my first trip to the Tropenmuseum in Amsterdam and it quickly became the best museum I have been to in Amsterdam so far. Their tagline is ‘Come to the Tropenmuseum and discover that, despite cultural differences, we are all essentially the same’. A lovely sentiment! Both the museums exterior and interior is incredibly beautiful and there is so much to see inside. What I loved is the diversity that it displays as the exhibitions connect you to different cultures and parts of the world. It was also quite funny because I accidentally stumbled upon the weekend of global cultures and watched the MAFB X Tropenmusuem Fashion Fest 2017, which turned out to be incredible!
As you enter the museum it opens up to the Great Hall; a fantastic space that was occupied by the runway for the fashion show. The different types of exhibitions filled the three floors of the museum. From Dutch colonialism in New Guinea and Indonesia to the devastation in Aleppo, areas which I had never explored before. There was also an exhibition on the history of slavery in the Netherlands. This brought to light how enslaved people created new forms of music and language to reclaim their culture. I appreciate how the museum brings to light the important question of how we deal with the history of slavery today.
Interestingly, there was also a Body Art exhibition dedicated to body alterations such a tattoos and piercings across centuries. Once again highlighting cultural differences over time. My favourite exhibitions looked at African fashion (which was what the fashion show was inspired by) and African music.
Fashion & Culture
After exploring each exhibition, the fashion was about to start! It was very cool and slightly overwhelming to see so many glamorous and trendy people in one place. From the models, the photographers and people sat in the VIP section, it was great to experience something so unexpectedly. All the designs, hair and makeup were extravagant and completely beautiful. The models were besotting. What I loved the most was how the designers had taken inspiration from African cities such as Johannesburg, Nairobi and Lagos. You could see from the colours and the style how they had incorporated this into their designs. Even the music was on point.
Thanks for reading! If you want to visit the Tropenmusuem, which I highly recommend that you do, then it is €15 or €8 for students! Watch a short clip of the fashion show below…